IT managers can build high-performing dev teams by promoting creativity, sharing ownership, and encouraging the team to share ideas freely. By behaving this way and using low-code to make dev faster and easier while reducing repetition and grunt work, they can build a motivated team that will go the extra mile.
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Table of contents:
- Characteristics of High Performing Teams
- Building a High-Performing Team
- Lesson 5: Invest in Low-Code that Drives High-Performing Team
If you are looking for ways to take your dev team to the next level, read this blog to find out how to supercharge their performance.
Looking for the right tool to support high performing teams? Check out this full guide to low-code development.
Characteristics of High Performing Teams
So, what is a high-performing team? High-performing teams are teams where all members are deeply committed to achieving the same goals and, as a consequence of that, deliver superior business results. One of the greatest things about these teams is that they usually show greater degrees of employee satisfaction and customer retention.
Some of the characteristics of high performing teams include:
- Shared vision: All team members focus on achieving the same end-goal.
- Team trust: The team exhibits strong teamwork and mutual respect for each other.
- Identifiable roles: Every member knows exactly where their team fits in the broader business context, and what is expected of each individual.
- Open communication: Discussions and disagreements are welcome when geared towards problem-solving and innovation.
- Strong cooperation and engagement: The skills and knowledge of people on the team complements those of others to foster cooperation and mutual understanding.
- Decentralized hierarchy: Team leaders support the team and address its needs, ensuring there are no impediments to reaching the end goal. Decisions are made by consensus, or by the team lead after open and frank discussions.
The question is, how do you get there? Moreover, how do you get there quickly? In a world that expects everything on demand, and you don’t have the luxury of time, you need to use low-code to build your high performing team quickly.
Building a High-Performing Team
Here are five best practices that can help you and your team outperform.
1: Take Time to Know Your Team
To build a high-performing team, you need to provide yourself with a little time to observe and listen to your team. Study the interactions and see who is working well together and who needs encouragement. Who is loud and who is quiet? Do you have someone that sucks the mood out of a room? Do you have an idealist you need to anchor? A thinker who needs to be nurtured? How do the team members handle stress? Can they take responsibility and ownership? Are there members who need a figurative hug or active encouragement? Harness your empathy and social skills and interact with the team to work them out.
Once you have established your team’s characters, strengths and weaknesses it will be easier for you to successfully build a team that is high performing. A quick kick-off session that’s fairly relaxed and conversational can help. Give the team an insight into you and seek the same in return. Asking somewhat innocuous questions like “What did you want to be when you grew up?” can prompt some insightful conversations. Don’t make it like an interview or one of those awful ice-breakers that so often start training sessions; just have a chat and let the conversation flow. You’ll get a good initial sense of the team that way.
Lesson 2: Lead With Your Team
So, how do you win your team over and get them to trust and follow your lead? These three rules can help.
Rule #1: Be Honest
Honesty goes a long way toward ramping up team performance. Let the team see you, who you are and what makes you tick. Be transparent and always tell them the truth. Being seen to tell others the truth goes a long way to building trust too. Being transparent throughout a delivery not only continues to build the trust, and nurture the relationship, it can also uncover solutions you may not have thought of.
Rule #2: Do What You Committed to Do
There is no quicker way to lose hard-won respect than to fail to deliver what you have committed to delivering personally. If you are not sure about a delivery, don’t commit.
Otherwise, you lose the respect of your team along with your credibility. Telling them there will be a delay or that there is a delay out of your control will not win you back some of that lost ground, either. Even if someone does something well 99 times out of 100, it’s that single failure that everyone remembers.
Rule #3: Everyone’s Time Is Valuable
This third one is perhaps the one that is the hardest to get others to recognize and implement. People tend not to keep their managers or someone more senior waiting, but how many times have you kept your team waiting or allowed interruptions to pause the discussion while the team sits around waiting for you to finish? Are you the manager who comes to a meeting and spends their time glued to their phone or clicking and tapping at their laptop? If you can’t pay attention, don’t come to the meeting.
Don’t be the manager that thinks being in the room is the same as being present. It is demoralizing for the team as it delivers the message that they are not important enough for your time. These actions will not only cost you, but they will also signal disrespect for your team.
Recognizing that everyone’s time is valuable extends beyond meetings. Have you made sure they have the tools and technology they need to make the best use of their time? Are they consumed with busywork or repetitive coding that could be alleviated with a low-code platform?
Lesson 3: Play the Strengths of the Team
Once you understand your team, you can distribute tasks more effectively, making sure that everyone's strengths are harnessed and that any development points are supported and grown.
Let's say you have a new developer on your team who is inexperienced but good at understanding the needs of the business. And you have a seasoned developer who can make code sing. Put them together on a project, get them working side by side with a high-performance low-code platform like OutSystems quickly, they will build amazing applications for your business.
If you have someone who is stressed when they are given deadlines, they can also benefit from low-code. Ask them how long they think they will need and see if they’re willing to try low-code. If not, work out their original estimation into your plan. This gives them ownership of the work and the delivery date without feeling you are imposing it on them.
Lesson 4: Work Around the Mood Killers
When discovering personalities within a team, you will, inevitably, find a mood killer who can sap all the joy and energy from a team. Mood killers moan, complain, find fault, and are just not happy.
Unfortunately, there are limited tools against mood killers. What you can do is try to identify what makes them tick or what would give them a purpose to try to divert or suppress their negativity. Again, having them evaluate and learn a low-code platform like OutSystems can turn the naysaying into a fan. If they object to low-code, check out this blog that busts a lot of myths.
Maybe you have someone who is always critical of every idea, claiming that the solution won’t work. Instead of challenging them on why they think it won’t work, ask them what they think will work. This will either drive out a solution or shut them down. There are many other examples and, no, not all of them will work, but you get the idea. Get to know the person, divert the negativity.
Lesson 5: Invest in Low-Code that Drives High-Performing Team
If your team is tasked with building innovative consumer and business apps that scale to millions of users in a few months, they probably can’t do it with traditional coding. No matter how carefully you’ve prepared them, there are only so many hours in a day. It’s just not possible to develop consumer apps and business systems in a short timeframe with traditional and even some low-code platforms.
Instead, help them develop them at top speed with zero friction and errors with a high-performance low-code platform like OutSystems. Its visual, model-driven design powered by AI and automated lifecycle management radically accelerates developer productivity.
With the push of the one-click button, your teams can deploy and make changes to apps with confidence, knowing they are secure and free of defects. OutSystems also promotes elite-level CI/CD, and empowers teams to deliver unique, high-value, complex apps fast.
Building a high-performing development team requires a combination of “people skills,” organizational behavior, and the ability to unite around a shared vision. You should get to know your team by whichever method works quickly for you, and if you don’t know what that is, try different things, find out what works for you and practice. Pair up members of the team, where possible, to complement each other and make them more effective together. Let the team know who you are and show them what makes you tick. Be honest, deliver what you committed to, and treat your team with respect.
However, in today’s breakneck business world, you also need help from technology if you really want high-performance. To accelerate your delivery cycles and help your team take the next step at high performance, take a look at low-code. A recent study shows that users of low-code are nearly 7% more likely to release new software versions more frequently than those not using low-code to release monthly or more frequently.